FIDDLER MUST BE PAID: HOW IT WILL AFFECT YOU?

(10/20/2008)

By Bob Weaver

How will the money crisis affect you?

Only time will tell, but be assured it will.

Beyond affecting millions of American's retirement benefits, small and large businesses are having difficulty getting what was once quick loans for payrolls and operating capital.

Regular folks, even with relatively good credit, are having trouble getting loans for autos and home improvements.

College students, who have long relied on student loans, are turning up empty handed.

While West Virginians have not been widely affected by mortgage foreclosures, getting a home loan will likely require extreme collateral.

A number of state projects could be in trouble, including improvements for the state's community schools.

The state's School Building Authority, which issues funds for new schools and school improvements, has yet to say what is happening with their funding.

George Hohmann, business editor of the Charleston Gazette, indicates layoffs are imminent in government and the private sector.

The State of Virginia has already laid off 570 state workers, cut college funding and postponed raises.

Government healthcare services stand to be slashed, further creating a problem with access and further placing hospitals, clinics, doctors and providers at risk.

Hohmann says Chesapeake Energy, now the nation's third largest gas producer, has been on "a hiring and investment binge since 2005." The Wall Street Journal says that troubled credit markets and falling natural gas prices (down 45%) have Chesapeake "scrambling to sell assets and cut costs."

The Russian corporation that now owns the state's last steel producer, says they will be laying-off 800 workers at their Mingo Junction and Steubenville, Ohio plants. They are reducing production in the US by 30%. Most of America's steel making has shifted to China.

The trickle-down, already felt with high food and consumer prices, could see some relief with hard goods or items that are optional for most families.

Despite the presidential candidates promises to cut taxes, that is highly unlikely.

The US is maxing out its "credit card" and the fiddler will have to be paid.


Hur Herald ®from Sunny Cal
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